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Companies are investing more in renewables

Oct 03,2017
Korean energy companies are pushing to increase their investment in renewable sources to reduce dependence on nuclear and coal power, an opposition lawmaker said Monday.

The Korea Electric Power Corporation is considering a plan to spend 54 trillion won ($47 billion) to generate 13.5 gigawatts of electricity through renewable means by 2030, according to Lee Che-ik, a representative from the conservative Liberty Korea Party.

Korea is seeking to increase the portion that renewable energy makes up in power generation to 20 percent, or 67.7 gigawatts, by 2030. Currently, renewable energy generates 17.2 gigawatts of the country’s electricity, the lawmaker said, citing official reports.

The country recently decommissioned its oldest nuclear power plant and put on hold the construction of two nuclear reactors in Ulsan in the wake of President Moon Jae-in’s vow to boost the supply of power from clean and renewable energy sources while weaning the country off nuclear and coal-fired plants.

In June, he promised to scrap all existing plans for new nuclear power plants and letting the operation of any reactors nearing the end of their initial life cycles expire. Korea has 24 nuclear reactors that generate about 30 percent of the country’s total power.

Moon has also pledged to shut down 10 aging coal-fired power plants by 2022 in a move aimed at reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

Yonhap